The Future of Ventilator Care
by Sam Nimah
Despite facing perhaps the greatest challenge seen in a lifetime, the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted what makes the healthcare industry such a resilient field. When thinking about the past three years, words like adaptability, collaboration and innovation come to mind.
One example is how hospitals modified previously established protocols during COVID-19 to provide resource-intensive care to patients, while also continuing routine hospital care. With each major COVID-19 outbreak, frontline healthcare providers were deployed to areas outside their clinical area of expertise to address an increased number of admitted patients.1 While this exhibited hospitals’ ability to evolve during a crisis, it also amplified the need to rethink daily protocols and incorporate multidisciplinary care models and dedicated care units to more efficiently care for patients.
This is something TriVent Healthcare incorporated long before the pandemic.
Taking A Multidisciplinary Approach
As many have come to realize, prolonged dependence on mechanical ventilation is an emerging public health problem, especially after a critical illness. Nearly 40% of patients entering the intensive care unit (ICU) require mechanical ventilation and nearly 20% of these patients are expected to have increased ICU stays due to difficulty weaning.2
It’s become vital to incorporate a multidisciplinary approach for patients receiving prolonged mechanical ventilation (PMV). Patients receiving PMV generally exceed the median length of stay in a hospital and have a disproportionate readmission rate as compared to those ICU patients who do not require PMV.3 Typically, these patients are treated by a dedicated team within the ICU led by a pulmonologist who is responsible for making decisions and writing orders.
While a focus on the lungs is important when treating ventilated patients, moving to a multidisciplinary approach with respiratory therapists leading patient treatment, along with a dedicated team of physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech pathologists, acute care trained nurses and dedicated case managers is suggested for future care models. This allows for more time with the patient, which enables early mobility and enhanced rehabilitation opportunities.
Read the full story at HHMGlobal.com